Aparecida 67 – Free Trade Agreements and More

A short paragraph, 67, expresses the concern for the effects of “free trade agreements” and other pressures on Latin America countries. This paragraph reflects some serious questions that have arisen, but it merely mentions them without doing a detailed analysis. It reflects the depth of a wide spread concern about how the developed countries and transnational companies use their power and international agreements in ways that affect the poor.

A critical concern in regard to Free Trade Agreements is that there is a asymmetry between the countries entering into these agreements, thus often giving rich countries an economic advantage in trade.

Globalization has frequently led to the signing of free trade agreements between countries with asymmetrical economies, which do not always benefit the poorer countries.

Furthermore, there is a concern about intellectual property and the patenting of genes.

At the same time, the countries of the region are pressured from the outside with excessive demands in the area of intellectual property, to the point where patenting rights over life in all its forms is allowed.

Finally, the bishops express their concern about genetically manipulated organisms.

In addition, the use of genetically manipulated organisms shows that globalization does not always contribute to combating against hunger or sustainable rural development.

This point is not developed in detail, but I would suggest that their concern is not only about health concerns of GMO crops, but issues of control of seeds and the effects of the use of GMOs in small scale agriculture, there poor campesinos do not have access to the financial resources that cultivation of some GMOs might entail.

Here is the USCCB translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.

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About John Donaghy

lay missioner with the Catholic diocese of Santa Rosa de Copán, Honduras, since June 2007, helping in the parish of Dulce Nombre de María.
This entry was posted in 2007 Aparecida document, bishops, evangelization, Guest Writers, John Donaghy and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Aparecida 67 – Free Trade Agreements and More

  1. Liam says:

    The highly debatable health concerns of GMOs undeservedly obscure the agricultural concerns, particularly the inadvertent sterilization of non-GMO crop seed by cross-pollination with GMO crops that have been hybridized to produce sterile seed.

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